Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014

The most polluted cities in America (25 items)

By , Deseret News

April 30, 2014

Tired of Salt Lake's pollution-filled inversion every winter? Try living in Bakersfield, Calif. where, according to a new study released by The American Lung Association, the short-term particle pollution is even worse.

According to the ALA, Salt Lake City (and it's surrounding area) has the 8th worst short-term particle pollution problem in the country.

For a city to have a problem with short-term particle pollution, according to their definition, means that the metro area has bouts of "unhealthy spikes" in air pollution, "even if the year-round averages are low."

Here we've compiled the ALA's ranking of American metro areas with the worst short-term particle pollution, along with their statistics on the demographics most at risk by the pollution.

1 of 25. Sacramento-Roseville, Calif.

Total population: 2,462,722

People with pediatric asthma: 52,202

People with adult asthma: 165,259

People with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: 89,297

People with cardiovascular disease: 130,118

People with diabetes: 189,132

Children under 18: 595,104

Adults 65 and over: 325,693

Poverty estimate: 408,101

2 of 25. Green Bay-Shawano, Wis.

Total population: 357,045

Pediatric asthma: 6,545

Adult asthma: 23,280

COPD: 13,980

Cardiovascular disease: 21,166

Diabetes: 22,498

Children under 18: 85,395

Adults 65 and over: 49,693

Poverty estimate: 40,952

3 of 25. South Bend-Elkhart-Mishawaka, Ind.-Mich.

Total population: 721,296

Pediatric asthma: 17,083

Adult asthma: 51,095

COPD: 41,574

Cardiovascular disease: 54,437

Diabetes: 59,597

Children under 18: 180,494

Adults 65 and over: 105,222

Poverty estimate: 117,073

4 of 25. Yakima, Wash.

Total population: 246,977

Pediatric asthma: 4,979

Adult asthma: 16,695

COPD: 9,646

Cardiovascular disease: 12,181

Diabetes: 14,799

Children under 18: 74,562

Adults 65 and over: 29,906

Poverty estimate: 55,498

5 of 25. Seattle-Tacoma, Wash.

Total population: 4,399,332

Pediatric asthma: 65,295

Adult asthma: 331,830

COPD: 190,214

Cardiovascular disease: 237,013

Diabetes: 293,198

Children under 18: 977,724

Adults 65 and over: 546,985

Poverty estimate: 515,767
1. toosmartforyou
Farmington, UT,
May 1, 2014

Whoever thought SLC was the worst in the country, other than those with an agenda that didn't think it through. I remember being in downtown L.A. in the 1960's and your lungs hurt and your eyes burned and you couldn't see more than about a mile in any direction. SLC does have some bad days, without doubt, but a little wind scours the entire valley in just a few hours. So no, the sky isn't falling, even if the PC police and treehuggers say it is.

2. TimBehrend
Auckland NZ, 00,
May 1, 2014

What is the relationship between the introductory paragraph (can't really call it an article) and the unglossed gross morbidity numbers for a range of afflictions in other American cities? Why no explanation of the meaning of an acronym that appeared on every page - COPD? Why no rates/percentages, just useless figures that readers have to perform ten calculations per page to be able to make comparisons. A far superior format would have been ONE table, ONE page, and ONE idea knitting the miscellany together. Then the eye could have taken everything in at once. Extremely bad reporting. I wish you would get rid of these ridiculous lists that require click after click, delivering nothing worth even the fraction of a calory expended in the finger work.

3. terra nova
Park City, UT,
May 1, 2014

“God's command to have dominion over every living thing is a call to service, a test of responsibility, a rule of love, a cooperation with nature, whereas Satan's use of force for the sake of getting gain renders the earth uninhabitable. Brigham Young's views on the environment direct attention to man's responsibility to beautify the earth, to eradicate the influences of harmful substances, and to use restraint, that the earth may return to its paradisiacal glory.”

― Hugh Nibley, Brother Brigham Challenges the Saints

Nibley wrote most effectively and passionately about a clean environment in "Approaching Zion." It is worth reading. One of his more lucid and accessible works.

Anyway you cut it, Utah's air quality is not something to be proud of. Let's do what we can.

4. Hutterite
American Fork, UT,
May 1, 2014

It's like, 'we're not #1, we have to try harder!'

5. dmcvey
Los Angeles, CA,
May 1, 2014

So, does the fact that another city's pollution is worse mean that SLC should do anything about the horrible pollution that does exist? Just because it's second worse doesn't mean it isn't a problem.